U.S. District Court Judge Considers Hendler Request for Multiple Trials

U.S District Court Judge J. Garvan Murtha is considering whether Paul Hendler, formerly of JavaPop and Green Mountain Digital, will be allowed to have 14 financial fraud and embezzlement charges against him separated into four trials.

Murtha heard the case for and against “severance of the prosecutions” in U.S. District Court yesterday. Hendler has denied any misappropriation of funds, having plead not guilty to the 14 counts of alleged financial misdeeds in late October 2011. The scope of the charges runs from 2007-2011.

In its motion to deny Hendler’s motion to sever, also under consideration by Judge Murtha, the U.S. wrote, “all charges are properly joined” and said they could be dealt with in a single trial, “without prejudice.”

Court documents obtained by Woodstock Early Bird detail the scope of the allegations against Hendler as his attorney notes they involve four separate companies and several individuals over the four year period in question.

In the first case of alleged financial misappropriations, the documents detail Hendler’s alleged misuse of 100K in JavaPop funds, including transfer of the money to personal accounts; the purchase and sale of 4 Honda Elements;and alleged misuse of $140K from a Dr. Paul Brown, part of which (56K) was allegedly used as downpayments on Hendler’s new Woodstock home. (These would be considered in the first court trial).

The court records also document allegations concerning Green Mountain Digital, which Hendler co-founded, but from which he was let go in 2010 due to alleged falsification of company vouchers. (This would be for consideration under Hendler’s plan as a second court trial).

According to these same court records detailing the 14 counts against him, Hendler also became involved with the Blueberry Hill Inn in Goshen, ostensibly to help the business and its owner, Tony Clark. The B&B and x-country touring business had some financial difficulties. Hendler, as part of his mission to help, came to have access to the business check book.

Allegations are that Hendler bilked Blueberry Hill and its owner out of $33K. But that was apparently not the end of it as he sought to help with potential default on their mortgage. As part of this effort, records of the indictments allege he convinced a Christopher Lloyd to transfer $25K into the Blueberry Hill account in Middlebury, a sum for which Mr. Lloyd has never been reimbursed despite a promissory note given to him with what may be a falsified signature.

Hendler allegedly never told Clark that the money from Lloyd for the downpayments came from someone else and when he was repaid by Clark, apparently pocketed it.

Finally, what Hendler’s attorneys would like to see treated as the fourth case with separate trial, the alleged financial misdeeds involving Mrs. Chevy Chase, aka Jayni Chase, and a company she wished to have Hendler start called Green Chase.

Documents filed by the Feds allege the $25K transferred by Mrs. Chase to Hendler was not used for website and marketing but eventually transferred to that same Middlebury bank in the Blueberry Hill incident. It was an effort by Hendler to again help Blueberry Hill Inn with its financial difficulties.

At yesterday’s hearing, Judge Murtha did not make a ruling on the motion to sever. It is expected that decision may be made in a month’s time. Meantime, Hendler’s trial on the 14 felony counts is to be scheduled no earlier than mid-May of this year. According to the court record, his conditions of release remain in effect pending trial.

Woodstock Early Bird first wrote about this case on November 1, 2011. At the time we listed Hendler’s conditions of release:

We have learned from the U.S. District Court that the conditions of Hendler’s release include refraining from use of alcohol, refraining from possession of controlled substances and willingness to submit to drug testing. He is also to report any and all interactions with law enforcement, including traffic stops.

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